Seychelles is a small, beautiful island country in Africa known for its beautiful people and nice coastline. Because of the beautiful beaches, it has become one of the best vacation destinations in Africa. But did you know there are many amazing foods in Seychelles you can explore?
What Is Special About Seychelles Food?
An interesting fact about Seychelles you should know is it has no indigenous population. As such, the Seychelles food scene has witnessed many influences over the years.
Although many cuisines have tried to dominate the food tradition in Seychelles, the country has stayed true to its unique culinary tradition. With a blend of French, Chinese, Indian, and English cultures, you can imagine the exciting foods in Seychellois cuisine.
Many of the ingredients used in Seychellois foods are often self-cultivated in small gardens and backyards. It is one of the best countries to experience the African food experience.
National Food Of Seychelles
Bouyon Blan (Fish Broth With Luffa)
This is one of the most popular soups in Seychelles, and there’s a fair claim that bouyon blan is the national dish of Seychelles.
Bouyon blan originated in the country; however, it has a French influence. It is very similar to the French food “bouillabaisse” that originated in Marseille.
Bouyon blan is made with fish, ridge gourd, and bilenbi (a cucumber-like fruit common in Seychelles). This is one of many bouyon enjoyed across the country, and it’s an everyday food locals enjoy.
Famous Traditional Seychelles Food
Kari Koko Poul (Chicken Curry)
Kari Koko Poul is one of the locals’ favorite dishes and can be found in almost every restaurant across the country. This Creole food is made with coconut milk and chicken garnished with local curry spices to enhance the flavor and aroma.
Locals love having their curry spicy, so if you enjoy some heat with your food, this is one creole dish you will enjoy.
This is a very underrated dish in Seychelles cuisine but an integral part of the local food tradition. Red lentils are a staple in Seychelles, often served as a side dish to other main dishes.
This is one of many Indian-inspired Seychelles foods, garnished with garlic, ginger, and onions. When cooked, the red lentils take on a yellow paste-like quality.
They may not look appealing at first but don’t be deceived. It’s an amazing dish with a fantastic aroma and taste you won’t soon forget.
This is one traditional Seychelles food you should add to your must-try list. The dish is believed to have originated from South Asia, somewhere between Thailand and India. Nevertheless, it has spread to become a staple food in Seychelles.
This creamy curry dish goes well with rice and offers an unrivaled aroma and a taste to match. Adding ginger, garlic, and local Seychellois spices boost the aroma. That superb flavor is the reason why it’s one Creole food you should try in Seychelles.
Chutney (spread or condiments made from various fruits) is another staple of Creole cuisine. Shark chutney, yes you heard that right, is another delicious Seychelles dish that originated in India.
Indians often serve their chutney as an accompaniment to main dishes. However, Creole people treat their shark chutney as a main dish.
This dish is prepared by boiling and mincing shark meat, mixing it with lime and other spices like turmeric, giving it a special taste. This food is popular across the country, and you can get it in many restaurants in Seychelles.
Kat-Kat Banana (Banana Porridge)
Kat-kat banana is one of a few unconventional delicacies in Seychelles cuisine. This is a traditional Seychellois porridge made from plantains or green bananas and garnished with fish fillets cooked in coconut milk.
This Creole food is simple yet healthy. It has a good blend of creaminess and rich flavor due to local Creole spices like ginger, garlic, and cinnamon.
You can enjoy this dish as a standalone meal or accompany it with a bowl of rice. Whichever way you try this food, you will surely enjoy the African food experience.
Fish And Meat-Based Food In Seychelles
Pwason Griye (Seychellois Grilled Fish)
Fresh grilled fish is one of the most popular traditional foods in Seychelles, and one seafood lovers will enjoy. Due to the country’s proximity to the sea, Seychelles is home to many tropical fish species. These fresh fish are often sold by local fishermen fresh from their fishing boats or in the market stalls. One of the popular ways Creole people enjoy their fish is by grilling over hot coals. Locals prepare their grilled fish with coconut husk to boost the aroma and add flavor to the food. The fish is sliced on the sides and marinated with spices like ginger, garlic, and chili. It offers a different dimension of flavor that is unique to Seychelle food.
Poisson Sale (Salted Fish)
While some may not consider poisson sale a main food, salted fish is a staple dish in Seychellois cuisine. This Seychelles food is basically fish covered in salt and preserved. It is a popular condiment in many Creole dishes like stew, soups, and curries.
Considering its long coastline and abundance of fish, you might be wondering why Seychelles has this kind of food. As much as they have access to this large water body, they also have bad fishing days. Preserving the fish helps ensure that people never go hungry.
This was a preservation method locals invented before the emergence of refrigerators on the island. However, the Seychellois people have retained this method of fish preservation. And although desalting can take a while, there is no better way to enjoy the local food experience in Seychelles.
Sausage Rougail (Tomatoes Creole Sausage)
This special Seychelles delicacy originated on Reunion Island and has been a staple of Seychelles cuisine for many decades.
It is one of the most popular dishes in Seychelles; many even consider it the national dish. As the name suggests, sausage rougail is a stew dish made from sausage. The sausages are cooked with tomatoes and local creole spices until the stew absorbs the spices to create a beautiful red stew with breathtaking flavor and aroma.
This creole food is often served with boiled rice. If you love simple traditional dishes, this is one you should try in Seychelles.
Bat Curry (Roussettes)
This is a controversial but signatureSeychelle food. If you want to try an exotic yet bizarre dish, bat curry certainly fits the bill.
This traditional Seychelle food is made from the wings of fruit bats. Some tourists find the idea of eating such food peculiar, but it is a cherished dish among the locals in Seychelles.
If you are an adventurous eater, you can try this food on your next trip to Seychelles. They can be found only at certain restaurants across Seychelles.
Smoked Fish Salad
This is another fish-based dish in the Seychelles food catalog. Like salted fish, this Seychelles dish was born out of innovation.
Initially, fish was smoked for preservation, but the technique has evolved beyond that to become a staple part of Creole cuisine. Seychelles smoked fish have a unique local flavor you cannot find anywhere outside this island nation.
Smoked fish salad is made with different types of vegetables, and no specific type of fish is used for this dish due to the surplus of fish in Seychelles. Unripe fruits like papaya and mangoes are added to the salad to add a tangy zest to the dish.
Salads In Seychelles Food
Salad Palmis (Palm Tree Heart Salad)
Often referred to as Millionaire’s salad, this is a special creole dish native to Seychelles. This salad is sweet, tender, and crispy, made with the heart of a palm tree as the main ingredient, and it’s a dish in Seychelle cuisine vegetarians will love.
Salad palmis is primarily milky in color. However, some of the ingredients like chopped onions, green tomatoes, coconut, avocados, and green mangoes give it an artistic look. The taste is also enhanced by ginger, mint, and coriander.
Green Papaya Chutney
This is one of the most famous chutneys in Seychelles cuisine. This food is enjoyed better as a side dish accompanying many dishes in Creole cuisine. Papaya chutney is made from unripe pawpaw grated and mixed with lemon, chili, onions, and other savory spices.
This is a good vegetarian Seychelles dish. It goes well with grilled fish, but you can always pair it with other dishes or even enjoy it as a standalone meal.
Satini is another one of the many salad dishes loved by Seychellois. It’s a side dish made from a combination of fruits and vegetables and is usually vegetarian. But if you are non-vegetarian, there is a version of this food made with fish or shark meat.
Creole people love spicy food, and this salad often has a lot of chili pepper. If you are not a fan of spicy foods, take caution.
Soups, Stews, And Sauces In Seychelles Food
Lasoup Tektek (Clam Soup)
This is a special delicacy in Seychelles cuisine, and it’s unique because clams can be hard to find. It takes immense time and effort to gather enough clams to make soup. Because clams may not be enough, some Creole people add crab to enhance the soup’s richness The clam’s natural flavor and distinct aromas from local spices make this dish one to savor.
It has certainly carved out its place in Creole cuisine.
Giraffe Crab Soup
This is a traditional soup at the top of Seychellois cuisine. It is made with giraffe crab and sweet potatoes as base ingredients.
This soup is savory as the crab and potatoes are cooked in soy-sauce broth and flavored with ginger, lemongrass, and chili pepper.
You can enjoy this soup with boiled rice or fufu. It’s a staple lunch meal in Seychelles that is loved by the Creole people.
Bouyon bred is a traditional Seychelle food originating in the country. This Creole dish is very versatile, as you can eat it alone, but it usually comes with accompanying dishes like rice, fried fish, beans, or lentils.
Bouyon bred is made from various greens, like Chinese lettuce, cabbage, or moringa leaves. This soup packs a punch of nutrients and flavor; it’s simple yet healthy. For vegetarians especially, this is one food in Seychelles you should have a bite of.
Snacks, Light Dishes, And Street Food In The Seychelles
Breadfruit is a very popular tropical fruit in Seychelles. The Creole people enjoy it in different forms, one of which is chips.
Breadfruit chips are more of a snack than a main food and a staple on the streets of Seychelles. This food has a natural fruity flavor; it’s crunchy and soothing for the palate. The fruit is sliced and salted before deep-frying in oil. On a street stroll in the evening, you can enjoy breadfruit chips with special creole sauce.
There are different ways to enjoy breadfruit beyond chips. It can be grilled, cooked, or baked; as such you can find several breadfruit snacks available in the country for you to try!
Desserts, Pastries, And Sweet Food In The Seychelles
This dessert is cherished across the island and has a solid place in Seychelles cuisine. Ladob is made from a combo of unripe plantain and sweet potatoes, although the potatoes can be substituted with breadfruit, cassava, or corossol cooked with milk.
This Seychelles dessert is made more flavorful with the addition of nutmeg and vanilla. It is one creole dish you can never get enough of, either hot or cold.
Cassava cake is a rather versatile Seychelle food. Some consider it a pudding, while others consider it a cake. This creole dish is also popular in many other countries in Africa.
It is made from cassava milk, sugar, and vanilla to give it flavor. This sweet dish is made crunchy by adding grated coconut. Cassava cake should definitely be one of your go-to options if you want to have something sweet in Seychelles.
Iconic Drinks In Seychelles Cuisine
While Seychelles is popular for some of its distinct foods, the country also boasts some iconic drinks such as the SeyBrew beer.
If you love beer, you definitely have to give this one a try. It is one of the oldest drinks in Seychelles, serving Seychellois for decades. Made in cans and bottles, it’s easy to enjoy while relaxing on the beach in the sun.
Kalou (Palm Wine)
This is one of the most iconic drinks in Seychelles, and it’s a local drink popular across Africa.
Kalou is made from the sap of the coconut tree. This drink is completely natural as there are no additives, and it has cultural value to the Seychellois people.
Locals take this drink in different forms. Drinking it immediately after harvesting gives you a very sweet drink, as the sap is very sugary. But if you leave it to ferment for a while, it attains a high alcohol content.
You can try both types of this drink to fully explore the local African drinking experience.
Buka (Seychelles Rum)
Buka is the local rum of the Creole people. It is a home-brewed drink made by fermenting sugarcane. It is a staple drink in many Seychellois festivals and traditional events.
This drink is popular in the country, and you can get it in restaurants and bars nationwide. It’s usually a homemade rum, but store owners and bartenders often brew some to sell in the shops and bars, respectively.
FLAVORS AROUND THE WORLD
Discovering Traditional Foods In Seychelles
Seychelles has many diverse foods regardless of your food preference. From the humble breadfruit chips to the spicy satini and the comforting ladob, you’ve got a variety of dishes to explore on your next visit.
Each dish is a unique expression of the island’s rich heritage. And don’t forget the drinks! Whether you’re sipping a SeyBrew on the beach, or sampling some homemade Buka at a local festival, the Seychelles food scene is something you should not pass up.